RDU Ends 2022 With 35% More Travelers Than 2021 

Avelo to Move to Terminal 1 in February

RDU served a total of 11.8 million passengers in 2022, an increase of 35% over the previous year and a sign that traffic is rapidly approaching pre-pandemic levels. Passenger traffic in 2022 was 17% below the record high of 14.2 million travelers who flew through RDU in 2019. The numbers were released Thursday at the monthly meeting of the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority Board. 

“RDU is moving beyond the recovery and toward sustained and reliable growth,” said Michael Landguth, president and CEO of the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority. “Increasing passenger traffic, more airlines and new routes make it even more critical for the airport to pursue the Vision 2040 projects that will help us meet future demand.” 

Avelo Move: Avelo Airlines will move from Terminal 2 to Terminal 1 on Feb. 16. RDU is deploying technology in T1 to facilitate a smooth transition and signage across campus will be changed to inform travelers about the new terminal location. Avelo will also launch direct flights to Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Orlando, Palm Beach, Sarasota and Tampa in February. The airline plans to add a base at RDU, employing at least 50 people and positioning a Boeing Next-Generation 737 at the airport.  

Breeze Launch: A new airline will debut at RDU in February. Breeze Airways will begin service next month with direct flights to Hartford, New Orleans and Providence. Breeze will add flights to Columbus and Jacksonville in May. All five routes will be new destinations for RDU. The airline announced in 2022 it would start serving RDU this year. 

Community Project Funding: RDU will receive two Community Project Funding grants this year thanks to former Rep. David Price (NC-04) and Rep. Deborah Ross (NC-02). Rep. Price, who has since retired, requested $6 million to help fund the replacement of Runway 5L-23R. Rep. Ross secured $5 million for the North Cargo Apron Taxilane reconstruction. These federal grants will help fund two of RDU’s critical infrastructure projects. 

La Farm Expansion: The award-winning La Farm Bakery and Café is expanding in Terminal 2. La Farm will increase its patio space to accommodate a “grab and go” coffee kiosk and additional seating in the dining and bar areas. The European bakery serves breads, pastries, sandwiches and café dishes. 

Economic Impact: A new report found RDU contributes more than $17 billion to central and eastern North Carolina’s economy and supports more than 85,000 local and regional jobs. The report was produced by the N.C. Department of Transportation Division of Aviation. It also found RDU generates more than $887 million in state and local taxes and $5.4 billion in personal income.